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Author Topic: Small camera pixels  (Read 1713 times)

dalethorn

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Small camera pixels
« on: September 03, 2008, 10:33:36 AM »

In this Panasonic TZ5 image, shot under near-ideal lighting, there's a shadow crossing the castle diagonally about 900 pixels in from the left side of the photo. Note that the bricks to the right and left of the shadow area are pretty clearly defined, while the bricks within the shadow area are so badly smeared, they're not even visible as bricks.

As bad as this is, it's about the best you can get from a camera with a 1/2.33 sensor. More importantly, this image illustrates why so many photographic forum principals are wrong in insisting that small-sensor cameras have wider angle lenses, and sacrifice the long zoom to get the wider angle. Landscapes and large people-group photos using small-sensor cameras produce too much pixel smear, so for my money, I'd prefer the longest zoom possible, starting around 40 mm effective on the wide end.
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Jack Varney

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Small camera pixels
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2008, 08:44:27 PM »

Dale, I can't disagree with you that "pixel smear" is evident here. However, much of the detail and apparent sharpness in the sun lit bricks is due to the sharp angle of the sun against the bricks. In the shadows this contrast is not present, therefore, some of the detail, which otherwise would be shown, is not presented.
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Jack Varney

dalethorn

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Small camera pixels
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2008, 07:52:23 AM »

Quote
Dale, I can't disagree with you that "pixel smear" is evident here. However, much of the detail and apparent sharpness in the sun lit bricks is due to the sharp angle of the sun against the bricks. In the shadows this contrast is not present, therefore, some of the detail, which otherwise would be shown, is not presented.
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Agreed that the sun does increase the contrast and apparent detail.  What was astounding to me was the *complete* smearing in most of the shadow area, as though there were no bricks at all.  I've been showing this around locally, and I realize now that people are unaware of how deficient their digital cameras really are.  I would love to shoot this with a 12mp DSLR and Leica M6 film camera side by side for comparison.  I'm betting the M6 would beat any digital SLR on shadow detail.  My instincts tell me that digital is still lacking in some areas, even with the best cameras.  I remember the inability to capture color in the slot canyons, for example, on one of the LL DVD's.
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